Residents grill bosses over planned franchise of Barkingside Post Office

Residents grilled Post Office bosses over the future of Barkingside Post Office at a meeting on Tuesday.

The branch, in High Road, could be closed and moved into a shop within months if franchise plans go ahead.

It is one of around 70 crown offices across the country earmarked for franchises in cost-cutting measures aiming to stem £40million losses.

Barkingside 21 chairman John Sharrock said around 30 people attended the “lively” meeting.

He added: “People were very keen that the post office should stay in the High Street.

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“It seems that people view the post office as part business, part social service, but of course the post office doesn’t see it like that.”

The Communication Workers’ Union (CWU) has staged 11 rounds of strike action in just five months over the proposal and disputes about jobs and pay.

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Representative Garrie Bond organised the meeting at Fullwell Cross Library, High Street, Barkingside, which was attended by Post Office and union representatives.

He said: “We asked if they could 100 per cent guarantee that services would stay the same and they didn’t answer.”

The Post Office said it has not yet found a franchise partner and will consult customers before a deal is made.

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